As a Fulbrighter in Kaohsiung, the Kaohsiung International Education Resource Center (Bureau of Education) foots half of my paycheck. So, sometimes we get an email from them asking us to participate in certain bureau events, but without really asking us. That is, its really hard to turn down one of these invitations. This turned out to be a great opportunity, actually, because we were going to learn a song in Taiwanese and then sing it with the Mayor of Kaohsiung, Chen Ju, who happens to be one of the most prominent members of the Democratic Progressive Party of Taiwan. The pro-Taiwanese independence party. Living in Kaohsiung, you get to hear a lot about the DPP, so this was going to be a really big moment for me.
Of course I jumped at the opportunity to SING with the mayor and hang out in the background of her endorsement of these educational things that are going on in the city.
We learned the Taiwanese song, and then an opportunity arose to learn a Mandarin song that would be sung in a small group, and I thought, hell, what’s one more song? Here’s a link to our mandarin song, Lets go to Kaohsiung, the time swims a bit, but all in all, solid shaking.
Sadly, Mayor Chen couldn’t make the date. She’s being sued by the Kuo Min Tang (the Chinese Nationalist Party) for negligence during Typhoon Fanapi, because she went to her house for a few hours during the beginning of the typhoon. It’s a political stunt, elections are this 22nd of November, so it’s just a distracting allegation, AND it made it so I couldn’t meet the mayor.
But, I’ve only been here three and a half months, I’m not giving up yet!